WASHINGTON (CN) – Jason Chaffetz, the Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee, said Tuesday night he has his “subpoena pen ready” and asked the FBI to turn over any and all documents it has regarding communication between President Donald Trump and former FBI director James Comey.
Rep. Chaffetz, of Utah, fired off a letter to acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe after a report in The New York Times alleged the president asked Comey to end the FBI’s investigation into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
“Today, The New York Times reported former Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey memorialized the content of the phone calls and meetings with the President in a series of internal memoranda,” Chaffetz wrote in the letter. “At least one such memorandum reportedly describes a conversation in which the President referenced the FBI investigation of former National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn and said to Comey, ‘I hope you can let this go.'”
Flynn resigned in February after it was revealed that he misled Vice President Mike Pence over communication he had with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
Chaffetz took to Twitter shortly after The New York Times story broke, tweeting, “@GOPoversight is going to get the Comey memo, if it exists. I need to see it sooner rather than later. I have my subpoena pen ready.”
In his subsequent letter to McCabe, Chaffetz said if the report was true and if “Mr. Comey created similar memos, including some that are classified about every phone call and meeting he had with the president,” those memoranda raise questions about whether or not the President attempted to influence or impede the FBI’s investigation of Flynn.
Any related documentation must be turned over to the committee no later than May 24, the letter says.
In a separate letter, the Democratic members of the House Oversight Committee and the House Judiciary Committee also demanded an investigation into the activities of top Trump administration officials who might be engaged in “an ongoing conspiracy” to obstruct the FBI, the Justice Department and other congressional investigations.
In their nine-page letter detailing the emerging controversies of the last few days, the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform’s ranking minority leader Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md, listed five U.S. codes which clarify precisely what constitutes a felony.
For one, “18 USC 1001 sets forth that a felony is committed by anyone who in any matter with the jurisdiction of the executive, legislative or judicial branch of the government of the United States knowingly and willfully 1) falsifies, conceals, or covers up by any trick, scheme or device a material fact, 2) makes any materially false, fictitious or fraudulent statement or representations or 3) makes or uses any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry,” Cummings wrote.